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This Day in Wrestling History (April 17)

31 years ago today in Allentown, Pennsylvania, The North-South Connection (Adrian Adonis & Dick Murdoch) defeated Tony Atlas & Rocky Johnson to win the WWF Tag Team Championship.

23 years ago today, Stan Hansen defeated Mitsuhara Misawa to win the All Japan Pro Wrestling Champions Carnival.

21 years ago today, WCW presented Spring Stampede (WWE Network link) from the Rosemont Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. 12,200 were in attendance, with 105,000 homes watching on PPV.

  • In a dark match, Danny Bonaduce defeated Christopher Knight. Yes, THAT Danny Bonaduce and THAT Christopher Knight.
  • In a dark match, The Sullivans (Dave Sullivan & Kevin Sullivan) defeated Haito & Tanaka-san
  • Johnny B. Badd defeated Diamond Dallas Page.
  • Lord Steven Regal and Flyin' Brian went to a 15-minute time limit draw for the WCW World Television Championship.
  • The Nasty Boys (Brian Knobbs & Jerry Sags) defeated Cactus Jack & Maxx Payne in a Chicago Street Fight to retain the WCW World Tag Team Championship.
  • Steve Austin defeated The Great Muta by disqualification to retain the WCW United States Championship.
  • Sting defeated Rick Rude to win the WCW International World Heavyweight Championship.
  • Bunkhouse Buck defeated Dustin Rhodes in a bunkhouse match.
  • Vader defeated The Boss.
  • Ric Flair and Ricky Steamboat fought to a draw for the WCW World Heavyweight Championship. The match ended in a double pin. Due to the controversy, the championship was vacated.

16 years ago today in Buffalo, New York, D-Von Dudley defeated Rob Van Dam to win the ECW World Tag Team Championship for his team, the Dudley Boyz.

15 years ago today on RAW from State College, Pennsylvania, Chris Jericho defeated Triple H to win the WWF Championship... only to lose it moments later back to Triple H. Truth is, Triple H never beat Jericho to win it back. Anyway, here's how it went down: Mike Chioda was ref bumped, then Earl Hebner came down to replace him. Triple H in recent weeks and months had been abusing his power, and that extended to referees. Hebner in response fast-counted Triple H down after Jericho hit his Lionsault finisher.

Fast forward about four minutes (after some bill paying and such) and Triple H, Stephanie McMahon and her brother Shane demand they reverse the decision on account of the fast count. After initially refusing, they replayed the ending and Mike Chioda, who was the original official in the match, said it was indeed a fast count. Earl agrees to reverse the decision, but only on the condition that as long as he's a referee nobody abuses him again ever. Triple H agrees and Chris Jericho through Earl returns the WWF Championship belt to the previous champion. Triple H, of course, fires Earl Hebner moments later, then assaults the ex-referee. The new—old—champion says the match never happened and nobody saw a thing. Of course video of it exists and everything, so yeah. Go ahead and deny it ever happened.

And to cap off this depressing story, D-Generation X (Triple H, X-Pac, and Road Dogg) defeat Chris Jericho and the Acolytes in the show's main event, with Triple H pinning Jericho. Chris Jericho: buried.

Oh, but somebody did win a title on this show: Scotty 2 Hotty defeated Dean Malenko for the WWF Light Heavyweight Championship.

14 years ago today at a Smackdown taping in Nashville, Tennessee, Rhyno defeated Kane to win the WWF Hardcore Championship. But it wasn't all bad for Kane: he and Undertaker defeated Edge and Christian in a no disqualification match in the show's main event to win the WWF Tag Team Championship.

8 years ago today at a Smackdown taping in Milan, Italy, Deuce & Domino defeated Paul London & Brian Kendrick to win the WWE Tag Team Championship. The win ends an 11-month reign for London & Kendrick, the longest for this version of the championship.

Turning a spry 61 today is Roderick George Toombs, best known to wrestling fans around the world as Rowdy Roddy Piper. Canadian by birth and Scottish by blood, he accumulated over 30 championships in his career, but never a world title. The well-traveled Piper is best known for his multiple runs in the WWE. He was in the main event of the original Wrestlemania and refereed the main event of Wrestlemania X. Piper, inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame in 2005, was named the #1 villain in WWE history in a 2012 list. Piper had many stints as an actor, but his signature role came as John Nada in the 1988 sci-fi film They Live, a role he sort of reprised for the video game Saints Row IV in 2013. The "Rowdy" nickname lives on through famed mixed martial arts fighter Ronda Rousey. Today, Piper makes occasional appearances on WWE programming and hosts his own podcast, "Piper's Pit", named after his famous talking segment of many years.

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